Canadian Soldiers Told Don’t Look, Don’t Tell

Canadian soldiers serving in Afghanistan have been advised not to see things they witness such as sexual abuses of women and children in the country. Jean Jones, who served as a chaplain had to counsel Canadian soldiers who had witnessed terrible cases of sexual abuse at the hands of Afghan soldiers, they were not to report these incidents. A soldier told her of witnessing a young boy being raped by an Afghan soldier while an Afghan officer calmly went about his business. The Canadian said his own commanding officer had informed his troops they were not to tell what they were witnessing on the part of abusive Afghan soldiers.

Lawyers for the Canadian Department of Defence say that unless a soldier has filed a formal complaint about abuse then Canadian officials are not bound to conduct any investigation. Chaplain Jones returned home suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder based on what she had heard from Canadian soldiers about the fighting in Afghanistan. There is something very sad about this don’t see, don’t tell policy.

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